The Deck of Shadows | Guest Post – Rob Lupine

Every now and then, I am contacted with someone’s personal experience with The Deck of Shadows. It is always exciting to hear how the cards have taken on a new significance for some. So . . . I share the following from Rob Lupine with you (and with his kind permission) –

INTRODUCING: THE DECK OF SHADOWS!

A few weeks ago I attended a meeting of mages, necromancers and other practitioners of the dark craft that I indulge so much of my passions in.

Such meetings are a great way to network, catch up with friends and share new ideas in the workings of the art, and I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend.

I always set myself a rule not to buy anything that I will not use, (no matter how pretty or attractive it may seem, the last thing the wife needs is another “Unusual” conversation piece to explain away in the living room!)

So when I saw the deck of shadows on one of the stalls I barely gave it a second look. After all, it was just another deck of oracle cards and I have loads of them. It was in one of those nasty little net bags that I hate so much- they rip so easily in the pocket!

It wasn’t even a respectable size- no bigger than a deck of common or garden playing cards! However that is the only time I will use the word “common” in respect to them!*

A little while later I was talking to the man running the stall, a man who I have a lot of respect for in the field- Dr. Todd Landman. We spoke of various routines and techniques and tools, and the conversation turned to psychic readings.

A few years ago Todd produced some amazing cards based around the Rorschach ink blot tests of the late 19th century. I was complimenting him of these cards and telling him how I used them in my psychic readings. Dr. Todd smiled and asked me, “If you liked them, have you seen the deck of shadows?”

Well not wishing to appear rude, I smiled politely while he reached for a deck and proceeded to open them and show me the cards themselves. At first glance the black and white imagery does not leap out, it has to be said. But this little deck doesn’t need to brag.

Each card has one key word and three secondary words to have meanings  in four directions if the user so wishes. The centre of the card displays a piece of classic art that reflects the words surrounding it, and at the top there is a playing card value. For those of us that know how to read playing cards, you will observe a lot of care has been taken to line up the right card value with the right image. To round everything off there is a different symbol at the bottom of each card.

There are 54 cards in all- the 52 standard cards, a “Yes” card and a “no” card. The latter two would be great on their own to work a pendulum reading!

One of the things I look for in a tool of divination is something that will “Speak” clearly to the reader, with a new meaning every time you look at them. This deck seems to achieve just that. I love the fact that I am still discovering new aspects and probably will continue to do so for some time yet.

The deck comes with a booklet that contains a description of each card and suggested spreads. It has to be said I seldom do more than flick through the book, preferring to get to know the cards in my own way and work in a style that seems right to me, however the book does make good reading.

The thing I love about these cards is that I was able to read with them right away- I was working with them on Psychic World TV the Monday after the meeting, and the answers practically leaped from the cards at me. A lot of the time I was able to do a full reading only using one card, however recently I have been using a three card spread.

The first card answers the question, “Where am I?”  and looks at where you are at philosophically speaking, the situation before you at the moment.

The second card looks at what action is needed to improve and progress the situation forward.

The third card will show the person having the reading what is around them to help them achieve the action described in the second card.

I have found this spread will answer most questions effectively, but as always would urge the user to discover their own spreads and work in their own way!

The Deck of Shadows is an amazing deck and I am delighted that Todd introduced me to them. He was selling them on behalf of a gentleman named Scott Grossberg, who was kind enough to allow me to use them on television.

I will say that these cards, while not the most flamboyant in the world,  have the ability to surprise, and impress. and being the size they are makes them easy to have on your person if you are put on the spot to do an impromptu reading!

If you are a reader and interested in getting your own deck of shadows they can be bought from this link (I’m not getting anything from Scott for doing this, I just believe in giving credit where it’s due.)

*Well- and also here, but that can’t be helped

SCOTT’S FINAL THOUGHT

Thank you again, Rob, for your kinds words. I look forward to hearing of your further adventures with the cards.

And thank you, Todd, for introducing Rob to his new friend!

If you enjoyed this, I’d be grateful if you click below to share this with others. That’s right, go ahead and help spread this information by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. Thank you!

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2012 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | A Place at the Table

Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action. – W.J. Cameron

Every year, at the same time, with the same declaration that 364 days have passed too quickly, and with the same promise that it’s still not too late to proclaim our gratitude, Thanksgiving arrives.

It can materialize quietly or with a dazzle of activity. Whether by way of a hushed and private moment or with the impressiveness of a parade and a large gathering of people, we all still reflect in the end upon the many blessings we have been given. Thanksgiving is a muse of sorts, you see; a whimsical and orchestrated social event that nevertheless inspires us to do better and act better and be better to each other.

This year, you have a special celebration in mind. It’s not something you can resist. Besides, who wants to fight against feeling thankful and admiring? So you take a piece of paper and sit down discreetly with just a pen and your innermost thoughts.

Staring at the spotless page in front of you, you imagine a holiday table is about to be set and adorned. The first plate is situated. It is yours. So, at the head of the table (wherever you imagine that to be on your paper), write your name and then draw a circle around it – a symbolic dish, of sorts. You take a moment to enjoy the solitude of sitting at an enormous table all by yourself. There is delight, at times, in an unescorted life, isn’t there?

But, then, your thoughts turn to the real magic of life; the excitement and charm of connecting with other people. All sorts of people. For it is the friendships and romances and relationships that bring vitality and energy to the world around you. It is the bond you share with others that gives you your edge and passion.

So you look at the paper in front of you – your as-of-yet unattended table (except for you) – and you start to wonder: Who else might show up for the celebration? And you pick up your pen, and you start to write . . .

Begin drawing 11 more circles/plates – one on either side of your setting, and then 3 plates on each of the remaining 3 sides of the table. Inside each of the circles, write down the names of 11 people you know and whom you’d like to have a good time with. When you are done, you will have a table with 12 place settings! There is no rush. You have all the time in the world to fill your festive table with guests.

Now, take a moment and really look at your table. John Donne was quite right – no man is an island. You are not friendless nor alone. There are people who care about you and love you.

So . . . take some time and conjure up the sounds, the smells, the look, and the tastes that your marvelous party bestows. Actually hear the conversations taking place. Savor the food that has been brought to your special get-together. See how everyone has dressed. Really imagine and enjoy the gathering as you call up all the joyous feelings you experience being around this outstanding and remarkable group that has assembled – just for you!

Soon, you start to notice that the center of the table is still bare. Alas, your party is hollow without nourishment and the sustenance of life. So you start to write some more . . .

Pick up your pen and, for each of your guests use the center space of your paper table to write down the 3 things that they are bringing to your party; the 3 personal qualities, traits, or characteristics that truly make them part of your feast of life! What is it about each of your guests that you are thankful for and respect? For example, someone may bring creativity, love, and a spectacular sense of humor to the affair. Another might bring wisdom, gallantry, and courage. Still another guest might bring intrigue, tenderness, and trust.

Finally, in the very center of your table, write down the 3 things that you bring to this holiday banquet! What 3 qualities, traits, or characteristics do you bring to the lives of your guests that makes their world more lavish, meaningful, and significant?

When you are done writing, examine all that you have noted; all those people who make your world a better place and life worth living. Notice, too, the notable blessings you pass on to others. You see, this table is now an inviolate place of grace and true thanksgiving, isn’t it? And, you have created a written celebration of life that can serve as a constant reminder of what you have, who you have, and what you offer.

If you’re an overachiever and want to take this celebration to the next level, write to each person whom you’ve invited to your private party and let them know the 3 things you are thankful for. And, don’t forget to share with them the 3 things you add to the relationship, as well. You won’t be sorry! I promise.

Have a Happy and Magical Thanksgiving!

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

The Deck of Shadows | The Romeo & Juliet Spread (Guest Post)

Is love a tender thing? It is too rough, too rude, too boisterous; and it pricks like thorn. – William Shakespeare, Romeo & Juliet

After Kevin Winder’s terrific Frankenstein Spread guest post, he delivers a one-two punch with his new, extensive Romeo & Juliet spread for use with The Deck of Shadows. Of course, I didn’t want to wait until Valentine’s Day to share it with you .  .  . so you get it now. As Kevin teaches you, the purpose of the Romeo and Juliet spread is “to show that in any relationship there is both good and bad, and that if potential obstacles are challenged and not ignored they can be overcome.”

I think everyone knows Shakespeare’s classic tale of love and tragedy. Needless to say, Kevin’s Deck of Shadows‘ spread allows you to explore the whole concept of true love conquers all.

GUEST POST FROM KEVIN WINDER

This spread uses 11 cards from a well-shuffled and cut Deck of Shadows. If you are giving a reading for a male client, you start with the Romeo card. If you are reading for a female client, the first card read is the Juliet card. You use this same rationale when addressing the other issues covered by The Romeo and Juliet Spread. In other words, feel free to start your reading with any position that makes more sense in the context of what your client wants to explore.

The 11 cards you will be using represent:

POSITION 1Romeo

MEANING:  This is the personal situation faced by your male client, and what they are bringing to the situation. This position can also highlight possible issues that they may need to resolve to make the relationship a success. [SCOTT’S NOTE: When you are reading for a female client, this position represents the male energy – if not the client’s romantic counterpart, herself – that is involved in the present situation.]

POSITION 2Juliet

MEANING: This is the personal situation faced by your female client, and what they are bringing to the situation. As with the Romeo card, this position also highlights potential issues that may need to be addressed for the relationship to work. [SCOTT’S NOTE: When you are reading for a male client, this position represents the female energy – if not the client’s romantic counterpart, himself – that is involved in the present situation.]

POSITION 3The Montague Family

MEANING: This is how Romeo’s friends/family view the current relationship, and how that perspective is affecting Romeo’s behavior, feelings, and goals. This is the position that reveals what others would like to see happen for Romeo. In other words, this summarizes their concerns and desires. This may be either or good and bad, but can be influenced by how Juliet reacts.

POSITION 4The Capulet Family

MEANING: This is how Juliet’s friends/family view the relationship, and how their perspective is affecting Juliet’s behavior, feelings, and goals. As with the former position, this also reveals what others would like to see happen – this time for Juliet. This may be either or good and bad, but can be influenced by how Romeo reacts.

POSITION 5 Romeo’s Personal Obstacles

MEANING: These are the obstacles that Romeo must overcome for his relationship with Juliet to thrive. This may also portend the the possible outcome if Romeo fails to overcome his challenges.

POSITION 6Juliet’s Personal Obstacles

MEANING: These are the obstacles that Juliet must overcome for his relationship with Romeo to thrive. This may also portend the the possible outcome if she fails to overcome her challenges.

POSITION 7. The Couple’s Obstacles

MEANING: Romeo and Juliet will have to overcome many obstacles (both small and more substantial) if their relationship is to thrive. This card indicates what obstacles they will have to work together to overcome as a couple.

POSITION 8. The Poison (Romeo’s Downfall)

MEANING: This is what could destroy Romeo and his love; what could lead to the demise of his relationship. It may also outline any potential issues that appear once the relationship with Juliet has blossomed.

POSITION 9. The Dagger  (Juliet’s Downfall)

MEANING: This card reveals that which can destroy Juliet and her love for Romeo; what can lead to the end of their relationship. Once again, this card highlights potential pitfalls that will be needed to be overcome if their love is to survive.

POSITION 10. Romeo’s Joy/Bliss

MEANING: These are the feelings and emotions that Romeo can bring to the relationship to allow true love to prevail. It may also indicate what Romeo has sacrificed/overcome to reach this stage.

POSITION 11. Juliet’s Joy/Bliss

MEANING: This card represents that which Juliet brings to the relationship, and the feelings and emotions that she has in regards to that bond. This card may also highlight the issues that have been overcome to achieve the comfort that being in this present union brings.

The Spread Layout

SCOTT’S COMMENTS

The real power behind Kevin’s Romeo & Juliet spread is the ability to begin your analysis and interpretation anywhere along the way. Most other spreads mandate a specific, linear style of reading. This spread, literally, sets you free.

Thank you, again, Kevin for sharing so lavishly with everyone!

If you’re interested in finding out more about The Deck of Shadows, you can go to my website at the following link:

The Deck of Shadows

Just some thoughts (from Kevin Winder and me). If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | Getting Just What You Deserve

Deserve your dream. – Octavio Paz

Do you have a right to be successful?

Are you worthy of chasing after your ambitions?

Are you qualified to use your personal magic?

Coming up with your answers to these important questions deserves your focused consideration. You see, I believe that a significant ingredient for taking your personal success to the next level is your ability to appreciate that you deserve the magic in your life. In other words, everything that happens to you takes place because, on some higher level, you have asked for it.

Please notice that I have not conditioned the concept of deserving as a type of reward; that you only receive in some necessary proportion to what you have already earned. Rather, I suggest to you that being deserving is about your skill in effortlessly recognizing and powerfully comprehending what you can attain. It is not always conditioned on some mystical type of endorsement or validation of prior deeds.

Now, I am not asking you to engage in some artificial or fabricated thinking. No, indeed. I am asking you to start engaging all of your senses and aim them at why you have an absolute right to be successful. Why you are worthy of chasing after your ambitions. And why you are qualified to use your personal magic.

So, how do you awaken to this new belief? The technique is easy; actually completing it, however, is demanding. It has been written about before by other authors. You will be creating a list of 100 reasons why you deserve whatever it is that you want. In other words, you take a piece of paper (or use your computer) and start off with the introduction:

I HAVE A RIGHT TO BE SUCCESSFUL BECAUSE . . .

or

I AM WORTHY  OF CHASING AFTER MY AMBITIONS BECAUSE . . .

or

I AM QUALIFIED TO USE MY PERSONAL MAGIC BECAUSE . . .

Then, you just write and write and write and write. You don’t take breaks. Get rid of or ignore all interruptions. Don’t worry about repeating yourself. Don’t censor what you are putting down. You just write.

Many of you will try and do this exercise in your head rather than physically writing anything down. DON’T!

Many of you will start this exercise and then stop part-way through the process, thinking that 100 items is excess. DON’T!

Many of you will not even start this activity, claiming that you’re life is too busy or that this exercise is silly. DON’T!

The whole reason for writing out such a long list of items is to force yourself past your normal in the box thinking, and move you to a comprehensive and full-scale realization. You see, the initial things you write down will be reasoned, usually ego-centric, and even superficial. It is after you write 15-20 items that you begin to find the real, spontaneous treasures; the real structure of what you want or believe or accept as true starts to emerge. Eventually, your good sense resigns and your wisdom takes over. Then, your stream of consciousness emerges and the flow begins to deepen. Each of these steps serve a purpose and are important.

S0 . . . just write.

At the end of this exercise you will have a collection of thoughts – some repeated, some unique. Once you are done, look through them and start finding the patterns that arise from the recurrence of your common themes.

After you discover your standard themes, meditate upon them! What emotions do they spark in you? How does your body feel as you mull them over? Do your themes prompt still other memories and thoughts? Write all of these down and get ready to set in motion a new powerful and vital energy in your life!

If you want to explore the idea of making lists of 100 things, you can also look into the writings of:

Michael Gelb – How to Think Like Leonardo Da Vinci

Kathleen Adams – Journal to the Self: 22 Paths to Personal Growth

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | Lessons Learned

I am still learning. – Michengelo

Today, let’s have some fun as I share with you some of the things I’ve learned from watching Presley, Gracey, and Marley play their way through life! I think the following pretty well sums up what they’ve taught me, so far. I’m sure there will be other lessons in the future.

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | Shambhala

Eden is that old-fashioned house we dwell in every day

Without suspecting our abode, until we drive away. – Emily Dickinson

When asked to consider the concept of Paradise, many people either imagine a Heaven that is somewhere up there, a long-forgotten Garden of Eden, or some other place they believe to be fanciful and unreal. But . . . what if a way of life filled with pure ecstasy and delight – a heaven on earth way – could be yours now?!? How would things be different for you if you stopped wanting to retreat from the hassles of life and, instead, started savoring all that came your way? All too often, we think of a heaven on earth that could only exist if we either withdraw from the ills of everyday life or we vanquish all that comes in our path. Here’s a test: If I asked you, right now, to describe your idea of nirvana or bliss or ecstasy, what would you say? And if I then asked you what having such serenity means for you, would you answer me in such a way that reveals you are running away from the pains of life rather than running towards the joys it offers?

This article is not about showing you a way to seek refuge from the daily pressures of life. Rather, I am suggesting to you that heaven on earth comes when you welcome everything about your life – the highs and the lows; when you adopt a new appreciation of what things and people mean to you. The events and people in your life don’t need to change. You need to change what they mean to you! Simply, when you finally adopt the philosophy that everything that happens to you materializes because you have asked for it, you gain a new attitude and frame of mind.

Most of you know that I admire Richard Bach’s various projects. He once wrote, Argue for your limitations, and sure enough they’re yours. For today, let’s rewrite this to read: Argue for your hell on earth, and sure enough it’s yours! If you want to experience pure joy and happiness, I am convinced you have to believe it’s already yours. Here’s a fresh concept for you to easily wrap your heart and soul around: Start acting like you’re happy!  You always have a choice in life. You can choose to be miserable. You can choose to walk on air.

Now, I’m not suggesting you go through life with rose-colored-glasses. I am proposing, however, that you can probably stand to change the interpretations you have given to many things and people. As you go through your day today, keep asking yourself what the things and people you are coming into contact with really mean to you and what they have to offer you in a positive way. Is your lunch just a way to have nourishment? Or could it mean something more? Is that conversation you have on the phone today a waste of your time? Or could it signify something greater in your life? Start paying attention to how your internal scripting is programming you and setting your expectations throughout the day. Then ask whether that dialogue is keeping you from appreciating the massive largeness of life! I invite you to start seeing the gifts you are given everyday, rather than only seeing some torment.

So, let’s practice for a moment.

STEP 1: Write down a few of the people you met or the things that happened to you yesterday or today:

1.__________________________________________________________________________

2.__________________________________________________________________________

3.__________________________________________________________________________

4.__________________________________________________________________________

5.__________________________________________________________________________

6.__________________________________________________________________________

STEP 2: So here’s the part that requires you to stretch your own beliefs. For each of the items or people listed in Step 1 – whether you originally viewed them as good or bad – write out how they positively contributed to your personal heaven on earth.

1.__________________________________________________________________________

2.__________________________________________________________________________

3.__________________________________________________________________________

4.__________________________________________________________________________

5.__________________________________________________________________________

6.__________________________________________________________________________

STEP 3: Finally, for each of the people or items listed in Step 1, write out the new, supportive meaning you will now associate with each of those people or things.

1.__________________________________________________________________________

2.__________________________________________________________________________

3.__________________________________________________________________________

4.__________________________________________________________________________

5.__________________________________________________________________________

6.__________________________________________________________________________

Take a moment and do a comparison. What’s going through your head now that wasn’t there before you started writing? I’ll bet the way you felt before doesn’t hold a candle to how you feel now. Are you now more relaxed or more excited about your life? Are you revitalized or perhaps more confident? Take a moment and notice whether you’re more optimistic or more lighthearted. You see, you just have to focus your attention on the things you want in order to change the way you feel. The goodness of life is always there for you to experience. You can start creating your own personal Shambhala by realizing happiness is something you can create – it is not always something you wait to happen to you!

So, where do you go from here? Resolve to yourself that you are going to be more engaged in the life you want rather than the life you believe is thrown your way. Make up your mind that you will find the honor, truth, and kindness in life for they are your birthright. Choose happiness! You deserve no less!

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | From Ruts to Roots

There are those who would misteach us that to stick in a rut is consistency – and a virtue; and that to climb out of the rut is inconsistent – and a vice. – Mark Twain

We’ve all had it happen – we get into the groove of life and then we get entrenched in that little routine we have created for ourselves. We become frozen in place and start to settle for what we have because it’s easier. And we stop finding what’s interesting because it can be hard to stay stimulated, so we resolve to allow the uninteresting to be our safe and easy trend. In other words, we assume – no, we choose – a life of monotony. Well, that’s all about to shift . . . because I believe if you’re not changing, you’re settling. And if you’re settling, you run the risk of easily sinking into a boring existence. And you don’t want that, do you? I didn’t think so. Today, we shoot up out of your rut by learning to grow roots. Literally.

This is another one of those techniques that requires you to grab a piece of paper and something to write with.

THE TREE

STEP 1: Think back to a tree that you have seen which captured your imagination, enthralled you, made you wish you could just lie under it for awhile, or sparked your creativity. In other words, what tree has made the most impression on you (for whatever reason).

STEP 2: Write out three (or more) adjectives to describe your tree.

______________________________________________________

______________________________________________________

______________________________________________________

STEP 3: Now, describe what you remember or noticed about your tree’s trunk. Use as many descriptive words as possible in writing out your recollection.

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

 STEP 4: Next, write out what you remember of your tree’s branches and leaves.

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

STEP 5: Then, write out what you imagine the rootstock and foundation of your tree to be like. Take care to imagine and then describe the essence of your tree and how it grew from a tiny seed.

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

KEY TO THE TREE: The tree that you have visualized represents your spirit, your essence, your deep-rooted nature. Like us, trees come in an array of shapes, sizes, textures, colors, families, and growth patterns. Just like your tree, your spirit can never be stuck in a rut, because it is always growing up and away from where it started. Your essence is unshakable, profound, and powerful just like the tree you remembered.

As your tree produces life-sustaining oxygen into the atmosphere, so does your spirit bring a unique expression to the world. And, like your tree’s root system which provides it a foundation, your spirit provides a means for you to consume the nourishment of life while it reaches for the sunshine of our experiences.

Bring your imagination to bear and start to notice that your true nature provides you a base from which to continually grow, while your creativity and intent allows you to branch out into the world and touch everyone and everything that you come into contact with. To truly experience what I have been talking about, fill in the following to give you a new appreciation of your true gifts and authentic self.

My true nature is (use the adjectives from Step 2)

______________________________________________________

______________________________________________________

______________________________________________________

My true strengths are (use the descriptions from Step 3)

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

My true influence in life is (use the descriptors from Step 4)

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

My true ability to succeed arises from (use descriptors from Step 5)

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

Take some time to contemplate what you have written down. Notice how, like your tree, you don’t have to be the strongest, the stoutest, the tallest, the largest, or the oldest. But . . . you are continually growing. So you have no choice but to thrive, adapt, and keep moving towards happiness (sunshine).

EXTRA CREDIT: For those of you who practice yoga and have the physical wherewithal, go into a Tree Pose (Vriksasana). As you stabilize your posture, imagine yourself as the tree you have imagined in Step 1. Notice what it feels like to be the tree of your dreams. Feel the energy in your body, the strength in your core, and the grounding onto and into the earth. Use this as a meditation. Then, write down the impressions that came to you.

If you have not practiced a Tree Pose before, you can find some information on it here:

Yoga Journal
Santosha
Wikipedia

EXTRA, EXTRA CREDIT: Look up the cultural, religious, and mythological meanings of your tree. Incorporate what you find into your daily thoughts about yourself.

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | Friends with Benefits

A friend in need is a friend indeed.

Today we’re going to do a little experiment. I believe you’ll really like it. There’s only one rule . . . you’ve got to promise that you won’t speed read through these instructions in order to skip ahead to the end without actually doing the work! Give me your word? Okay, here we go:

Step 1: Take a piece of paper and a pen, and quickly write out the names of 5 of your friends or family members (you can always print out this page and use that).

1.  ________________________________________________

2.  ________________________________________________

3.  ________________________________________________

4.  ________________________________________________

5.  ________________________________________________

Step 2: Below each name that you have written, write out one thing you would say to them that, if they followed your advice, would change their life for the better.

FIRST NAME

What you would say:  ___________________________________________________________

SECOND NAME

What you would say:  ___________________________________________________________

THIRD NAME

What you would say:  ___________________________________________________________

FOURTH NAME

What you would say:  ___________________________________________________________

FIFTH NAME

What you would say:  ___________________________________________________________

Step 3: Take each of the statements you wrote out in Step 2, and now reflect on how each of those critiques/suggestions actually applies to you! Rewrite each of your Step 2 friend recommendations for your use! Write these out, by the way, in the  present tense. For example, if you put forward the advice that a friend needs to lose weight, you would rewrite this for yourself as, I am now losing the weight I need to be healthy.

1.  I am now ___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

2.  I am now ___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

3.  I am now ___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

4.  I am now ___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

5.  I am now ___________________________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________________________

Step 4: Rinse and repeat periodically to gain some new insights.

USER NOTES

There will be times when you write out a recommendation for a friend that, on first blush, does not seem to apply to you. For example, in using this technique myself, I used the statement for a friend, stop smoking! Now, I don’t smoke so I certainly can’t rewrite this as I am now a non-smoker and healthier than ever. However, I examined what I wrote and started perceiving that what I really wanted my friend to do was to stop smoking so they would be healthier. I wanted them to stop putting bad things into their body. That awareness then allowed me to recast my statement (for me) into I am now putting healthier and healthier things into my body so that I can be powerful and fit.

Also, you might simply have some comments for your friends that sound like this: keep up the good work! That’s great, too. You can turn those around into self-serving pledges like:  I just keep getting better and better because I know what works!

Oh, and one more thing – this technique makes an insanely great party game. When used in a group setting, you can actually go around the room and people share their wisdom for others and then are told that the advice is actually for them. Now, I don’t suggest that you have the participants share which friend they are talking about – that could be prove to be hurtful. So, as a reminder, you are just letting guests share their advise, and then use it on themselves.

As you can see, the way I am using the phrase friends with benefits is not about relationships that lack emotional involvement. Rather, this technique is built around two concepts; namely, we sometimes know our friends better than we know ourselves, and (as Richard Bach said) we teach best what we need most to learn. Your friends (at least your notions about your friends) bring with them a lifelong instruction manual for providing you with well-being, rewards, and comfort!

Use your musings about your friends well.

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | From Sacred Cows to Holy Cow!

The fact that I have no remedy for all the sorrows of the world is no reason for my accepting yours. It simply supports the strong probability that yours is a fake. – H.L. Mencken

Your own thinking is likely not serving you well! But it could. Stop thinking your own way out of success, and get on with having what you want. Ready to stop your bad behaviors and bad thinking and bad feelings?

Read on . . .

First, take a moment and consider how many of your own thoughts are considered, by you, immune from question or criticism. And I mean by yourself or others. We all have them. Those sacred cows of personal belief; the untouchable convictions we have formed that we think form the foundation for our security in the world. These might not be things we know, but we certainly are convinced of their truth, aren’t we?

If your thinking is not thoroughly and completely and utterly serving you well, then it’s time to start disputing your beliefs. Find the impressions, theories, and conclusions that obey you (they make your life work) and keep those. The rest (the ones that don’t work)? Get new ones! Move from pleasing others to choosing for yourself.

So . . . how do you discover what works and what doesn’t? Take a piece of paper or use your computer and jot down (in a spontaneous and stream-of-consciousness kind of way) all the judgments, ways of thinking you enjoy, convictions you have, and opinions you hold that you know – deep in your heart – are keeping you from having the success you want. Be savagely honest! Have a straightforward confrontation with your soul! This is not the time to be gentle or humane.

Then, take one of your this-isn’t-working-for-me-anymore notions, and ask these questions:

1.  Do I hold this belief because I care what people think of me? If you are holding a belief because you are concerned about what others think of you, you are allowing them to lead you in the direction of their dreams. Challenge the norm. Be yourself.

2.  Have I stated my opinion concisely and compactly? If you can’t express what you believe quickly and clearly, chances are you are spending waaaaay too much time lost in the maze of your own mind. To paraphrase Hannibal, either find a way out of your tangled thoughts or make one. Here’s a technique that will work for you: pretend that your belief is going to be written up in TV Guide. What is the tagline that will appear that will compel someone else to tune in to your show?

3.  Do I have too much drama attached to my belief? Admit it, you like the spectacle, the crisis, the excitement, don’t you? If you want to use drama to thrill you into action, terrific! If, on the other hand, you are allowing drama to create turmoil and inaction, LOSE THE DRAMA!

4.  Do I own my belief? People can spot a fake a mile away! So, start asking yourself, do your deeds, your appearance, and how you are heard match your internal belief? Or, are you just giving lip-service to the belief because it’s the thing to do and you’ve been taught the belief by someone else? Give yourself permission to have a unique point of view, a one-of-a-kind personality, and an uncommon look. Stand out from the others. Most importantly, be congruent with yourself.

5.  Does my opinion express either what I like and what I don’t like? You have a lifetime of experience. You know what you like and don’t like (or should). Be okay with those choices. Yeah, that’s right, make a few waves in other people’s thinking.

6.  Do I say what I want, when I want to? But . . . this isn’t about being rude. You can still express your authentic self in an elegant way. And, you don’t have to talk over or walk all over someone else to be heard. In fact, give focused listening a shot for awhile. By listening, first, and speaking, second, you will surely find that your words and opinions have more impact.

7.  Have I considered that everyone has different ideas? Unless you’re in that type of setting and the agenda is warranted, most of the time you are not on this earth to force other’s to conform to anything. Rather, you are here to live your life and walk your talk, and show or explain what you do. Let everyone else conform to the world’s expectations and standards. Be a living example of your truth. You might be surprised to find that you become a model for others.

8.  Have I crossed the boundaries of success? Look, I’ve just been going on and on about being an original YOU and owning your own thoughts and reexamining what you previously held as sacred. That does not mean you should give yourself permission to go out and be a nonconformist, heretic, or rebel just for the sake of being a jerk. Your maverick, free-spirit self can express itself while still staying true to the ultimate question: Is my belief serving me well? Oh by the way, today’s technique is designed to enable you to attack concepts, ideas, and beliefs – not people. Very rarely are there good reasons to make others feel or appear small.

9.  Is my belief a natural extension of me and not contrived? Who is the real you? Let others see and hear and experience who you really are! You can’t be someone else.

1o.  Am I taking things personally? Don’t take anything personal. Ever.

Today’s exploration has been about the freedom of questioning, exploring, and enhancing your own successful thoughts and beliefs. To do that, simply remember:

Don’t just worship your own beliefs – feed your thinking

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com

Thinking Magically™ | The Lessons of Le’ahi

In the end . . . we will take care of only what we love; we will love only what we understand; we will understand only what we are taught. – Hawaiian Proverb

Nearly 300,000 years ago, a magnificent crater was formed during a single, powerful eruption. It is what many know today as Diamond Head or Le’ahi in Hawaii. Nearly a mile long, the hike from the trail’s head to the Le’ahi summit is steep, uneven, and strenuous; you climb 560 feet from the crater floor. The trail includes many switchbacks, a dark 225 foot tunnel, over 220 stair steps, and a very narrow spiral stairway! Once you reach the summit, you have a breathtaking, panoramic view.

As I hiked up (and back down) Le’ahi, I saw many people talking of giving up and many more complaining (I wonder how many thought of making the trek and then never even tried). Many people were out of shape, and did not appear prepared for their climbing adventure. Still, there were others who were jogging (and, yes, one kid running full out to get to the top). Perhaps we were all a little crazy following our vision; still . . . we moved forward and upward and encouraged each other. There was joking and the feeling of accomplishment upon reaching the top.

I traveled very lightly for this particular trip. It was freeing, to say the least.

At some of the switchbacks and certainly in the tunnel and stairways, you had to have patience. I had to remember that everyone else out there was following their dream of reaching the top, too. They had a right to proceed at their own pace. In fact, I learned that it’s okay to stop and catch your breath sometimes (or to wait while others catch theirs).

Naturally, I came to realize that there are some real life lessons that this massive volcano had to offer me. So, for a bit of fun, today, I put together this little collection of photographs and thoughts for you to consider and for me to remember:

I think you know, by now, that I always like to look at my surroundings and notice the omens that are given. Take a moment, today, and find your own good omens to consider (no matter where you are)!

Just some thoughts. If you enjoyed this, please click below to share this with others.

And make sure to sign up for my blog mailing list so you get all future postings delivered directly to your inbox.

© 2011 by Scott Grossberg. All Rights Reserved. thinkingmagically.com